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Archive for August, 2005

John Mark Reynolds: “I Switched”

In April, blogger John Mark Reynolds praised the ESV (scroll down all the way to see the content if you click the link):

I have a new standard study Bible and can report that Torrey Honors at Biola is thinking of making the same switch…. It is accurate and unafraid to use theologically precise words…. It uses English no more difficult (in terms of reading level) than the underlying Greek. Mark is simple. Romans is complex.

In short, it is marvelous.

We’ll be attending GodBlogCon in October 2005 at Biola University in southern California. John’s playing a big part in organizing the convention. If you’re interested in blogging as a Christian, we’d love to see you there.

August 31, 2005 | Posted in: ESV,General | Author: Crossway Staff @ 9:20 am | Comments Off »

1 Peter 3:15a

Today we’re sharing with you another example of how much thought can go into translating even part of a verse.

This post condenses a 9-page PDF by Charles Kuykendall and C. John Collins (the Old Testament Chair for the ESV). We encourage you to read the paper if you want a fuller discussion.

Here’s 1 Peter 3:15a:

but in your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy… (ESV)

This verse cites Isaiah 8:13:

But the LORD of hosts, him you shall regard as holy. (ESV)

The full paper deals with the following questions, which we will only summarize here.

1. What is the true text of 1 Peter 3:15?

The King James Version translates this verse as:

But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts. (KJV)

Note that it has “God” instead of “Christ.” The manuscript evidence favors “Christ.”

2. Can we translate this verse to show the connection to the Old Testament?

Most translations do not attempt to bring out the citation. They use different English words in Isaiah and 1 Peter.

3. What is the proper meaning of the Greek verb “to make holy” in this verse?

People don’t make God holy, so in this case the verb carries more the sense of treating or revering him as holy. The English word “sanctify” condenses this idea into a single word. Saying that we “set apart” Christ undertranslates the meaning, since “setting apart” doesn’t convey holiness in English.

4. What is the grammatical relationship of “Lord” and “Christ?”

Most English translations treat Lord as a “complementary accusative”–that is:

but in your hearts reverence Christ as Lord. (RSV)

The ESV treats Christ and Lord as appositives: “Christ the Lord.” In addition to the Greek grammatical evidence for this translation, this verse is directly applying the Old Testament passage to Jesus. It strongly affirms the deity of Christ.

August 29, 2005 | Posted in: ESV,Translation | Author: Crossway Staff @ 9:52 am | (2) Comments »

Bible for Life Radio Spot: Mike Nawrocki

We’ll be sharing with you a number of radio spots sponsored by The Standard Bible Society. Each 60-second spot features someone reading a verse or two in the ESV and sharing some thoughts about it.

Today’s spot is from Mike Nawrocki, best known as the voice of Larry the Cucumber on VeggieTales. He talks about 2 Corinthians 12:9-10.

Listen now (mp3).

Update: Changed the link to the mp3.

August 26, 2005 | Posted in: ESV,General | Author: Crossway Staff @ 8:50 am | 1 Comment »

“Acts 9:31 and Church Growth”

“Styria” writes about the ESV: “But what I like best about the English Standard Version, which became clear as soon as I opened it, is that it is very good for properly dividing the Law and the Gospel.”

He then cites Acts 9:31 in two translations to illustrate his point and discusses why he thinks the ESV gets the translation right in this instance: “The ESV, on the other hand, uses the fear of the Lord and the comfort of the Holy Spirit to characterize the growing church. I don’t think it’s a long stretch to say that that means the Law and the Gospel….” Read the complete post.

August 24, 2005 | Posted in: ESV,General | Author: Crossway Staff @ 8:51 am | 1 Comment »

FAQ: Malachi 2:16

Here’s Malachi 2:16 in the ESV:

“For the man who hates and divorces, says the LORD, the God of Israel, covers his garment with violence, says the LORD of hosts. So guard yourselves in your spirit, and do not be faithless.”

Here’s Malachi 2:16 in the RSV:

“For I hate divorce, says the LORD the God of Israel, and covering one’s garment with violence, says the LORD of hosts. So take heed to yourselves and do not be faithless.”

You can see the different emphasis of the verse in these two translations. Why did the ESV translators translate this verse this way?

The answer turns on some fairly technical points in Hebrew, but it boils down to three arguments, as explained by ESV Old Testament Chairman C. John Collins:

  1. The translation of this verse found in the AV [KJV] (and most English Bibles since then), with God hating divorce, represents a departure from the translation tradition of the previous centuries.
  2. The rendering of the ESV, which has a Judean man “hating” his wife and divorcing her, does the best job of handling the details of the Masoretic Text, with no corrections. It also enables us to see how this fits into the context of profaning the calling of the people of God.
  3. This way of reading Malachi 2:16 allows us to see how the verse fits into the overall promotion of covenant fidelity as the ideal of marriage, an ideal for which the faithful among the people of God—whether in ancient Israel or in the Christian Church today—will seek all the resources of grace, of forgiveness, of fellowship with the saints, and of the Holy Spirit’s enabling power.

That’s the short answer. For the long answer, read this 25-page article (pdf) by C. John Collins. You can also find this article (and others) on the Articles page elsewhere on this website.

August 22, 2005 | Posted in: AAA - BLOG UPDATE,Bible News,ESV,ESV,News & Announcements,Translation | Author: Crossway Staff @ 9:37 am | (3) Comments »